We just can’t get out of our way

Published 11:30pm Thursday, October 4, 2012

It has been our policy for sometime now to avoid taking a position in an opinion piece on a news story that appears in the same edition. It is our opinion today, to make an exception.

Our exception is for the story involving Selma City Council president candidate Tremayne “Toby” Gorden and the pending court appearance with Dallas County Board of Registrars official Lola Sewell.

In the appearance, details of a possible libel case will be presented, where Sewell claims Gorden was behind a flyer that — in Sewell’s opinion — is defamatory to her and two others named in the flyer.

Today’s opinion does not take aim at this particular case but rather takes an opinionated view of the heavily polluted political waters that Selma is routinely immersed in.

We will leave it to the courts to decide if this flyer in any way broke libel laws, we instead take a position that such flyers — regardless of whether they are legal are not — do little to advance the case of one candidate and elevate the political debate we expect from our leaders.

And this is just the latest juvenile story we’ve heard coming from the upcoming run-off election.

This is the type of stuff (note: we sought to use another word here, but felt since we were a newspaper 185 years in the making, we should act like it) that is routine in Selma politics.

And for that, we simply say stop it. We’ve had enough. We’re tired of hearing about, we’re tired — in some cases — writing about, and we can only assume the voters of Selma are just tired of being tired.

Enough.

We know that we should expect more from our candidates, but do you blame us if we’re getting a little used to being disappointed?

The only insult thrown out by candidates this election cycle is “your momma wears combat boots.”

Unfortunately, those voters who do not take the time to check the facts, verify what they are told and decide to follow a particular candidate for the sole reason they are energetic or look good all dressed up.

We want candidates who have substance, who have plans and have the intelligence and maturity to lead our city in a positive direction.

The city of Selma has a special place when it comes to the voting rights and civil rights movements of the 50s, 60s and beyond. We should be the shining example of how it should be. We should be a place that is an example others would look upon and hope to immulate.

Unfortunatley, we’re not. We simply can’t get out of our own way.

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